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Does income taxation affect partners’ household chores?

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Abstract

We study the impact of income taxation on both partners’ allocation of time to market work and unpaid house work in households with two adults. We estimate a structural household utility model in which the marginal utilities of leisure and house work of both partners are modelled as random coefficients, depending on observed and unobserved characteristics of the household and the two partners. We use a discrete choice model with choice sets of 2,401 points for each couple, distinguishing seven market work intervals and seven house work intervals for each partner. The model is estimated using data for France, which taxes incomes of married couples jointly, like, for instance, Germany and the US. We find that both partners’ market and non-market time allocation decisions are responsive to changes in the tax system or other policy changes that change the financial incentives. Women’s time allocation is more responsive to the own and the partner’s wage rate than men’s. Tax policy simulations suggest that moving from joint taxation for married couples to separate taxation of each spouse would go a small step in the direction of equalizing market and non-market work of spouses. Selective taxation with smaller tax rates for women than for men would magnify these effects.

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  • Arthur Van Soest & Elena Stancanelli, 2010. "Does income taxation affect partners’ household chores?," Documents de Travail de l'OFCE 2010-12, Observatoire Francais des Conjonctures Economiques (OFCE).
  • Handle: RePEc:fce:doctra:1012
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    1. Richard Blundell & Ian Walker, 1986. "A Life-Cycle Consistent Empirical Model of Family Labour Supply Using Cross-Section Data," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 53(4), pages 539-558.
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    Cited by:

    1. Elena Stancanelli, 2012. "Spouses' Retirement and Hours of Work Outcomes : Evidence from Twofold Regression Discontinuity," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00755648, HAL.
    2. Patricia Apps & Jan Kabátek & Ray Rees & Arthur Soest, 2016. "Labor supply heterogeneity and demand for child care of mothers with young children," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 51(4), pages 1641-1677, December.
    3. Knoef, M.G., 2011. "Essays on labor force participation, aging, income and health," Other publications TiSEM 2ac55c2f-b678-457d-b936-7, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    4. Stancanelli, Elena G. F., 2012. "Spouses' Retirement and Hours Outcomes: Evidence from Twofold Regression Discontinuity with Differences-in-Differences," IZA Discussion Papers 6791, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. repec:spr:jhappi:v:19:y:2018:i:3:d:10.1007_s10902-017-9847-0 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    time use; taxation; discrete choice models;

    JEL classification:

    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • H31 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Household
    • C35 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models; Discrete Regressors; Proportions

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